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  • Records required for your business's tax return – deductions

    To claim deductions in your tax return for business expenses, you must have the records to substantiate your claims. Your records must also show how you worked out the business use proportion of relevant expenses.

    Details about the records you need to keep for claiming deductions for common business expenses are provided below:

    Motor vehicle expenses

    Tax return records information and examples

    Information your records need to show about your motor vehicle expenses

    Examples of types of records

    The records you need to keep depend on how you calculate your claim. You will generally need to keep:

    • details of the kilometres travelled for business and private use
    • loan or lease information
    • registration information
    • details of how you calculated your claim.

    If you are a sole trader or partnership using the logbook method, you will need to keep additional records. Your logbook must contain:

    • when the logbook period begins and ends
    • the car’s odometer readings at the start and end of the logbook period
    • the total number of kilometres the car travelled during the logbook period
    • the number of kilometres travelled for each journey. If you make two or more journeys in a row on the same day, you can record them as a single journey
    • the odometer readings at the start and end of each subsequent income year your logbook is valid for
    • the business-use percentage for the logbook period
    • the make, model , engine capacity and registration number of the car.

    For each journey, record the:

    • reason for the journey (such as a description of the business reason or whether it was for private use)
    • start and end date of the journey
    • odometer readings at the start and end of the journey
    • kilometres travelled.
     
    • Registration papers
    • Loan or lease documents
    • Fuel and oil receipts, tax invoices
    • Repairs and servicing receipts
    • Insurance documents
    • Logbooks
    • ATO app – electronic logbook (for sole traders)

    See also:

    Business travel expenses

    Tax return records information and examples

    Information your records need to show about your business travel expenses

    Examples of types of records

    Business travel expenses:

    • information to substantiate your business travel expenses
    • how you separate your business and private use portions.
     
    • Tax invoices
    • Boarding passes
    • Tickets
    • Travel diaries

     

    See also:

    Home-based business expenses

    Tax return records information and examples

    Information your records need to show about your home-based business expenses

    Examples of types of records

    • Information to substantiate your claims for all of your home-based business expenses.
    • How you separate your business and private use portions (for example, a diary over a representative four-week period or records of how you calculated the percentage of your floor plan dedicated to your business).
     

    Tax invoices or receipts for:

    • purchase and repairs of furniture and equipment used for your business
    • utility bills and cleaning expenses
    • mortgage interest, rent, insurance and council rates (if you claim occupancy expenses)
    • rental contract between homeowner and business (if you claim occupancy expenses)

    Diary

    Evidence of calculations

    See also:

    Other business expenses

    Tax return records information and examples

    Information your records need to show about other business expenses

    Examples of types of records

    Other business expenses you pay for in cash, online, or using credit or debit cards, which you will claim as a tax deduction, including:

    • salary, wages and super
    • repairs, maintenance and replacement expenses
    • operating expenses
    • depreciating assets and capital expenses.

    Your records must show how you worked out the business use proportion of relevant expenses.

    • Receipts
    • Tax invoices
    • Cheque book receipts
    • Credit card vouchers
    • Diaries to record cash expenses
    • Purchase records from suppliers
    • Work sheets for calculations
    • Records of choice of super fund

     

    See also:

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    Last modified: 04 Dec 2019QC 60743